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Digital Tech Supercluster 1st Cohort

Canada Announces 1st Cohort of Projects for Digital Tech Supercluster

Seven projects with $40 million of investment in precision health, data commons, and digital twins.

Canada's Digital Technology Supercluster is an industry-led innovation consortium centered in Vancouver, aimed to anchor Canada’s position as a global leader in digital technologies by bringing together small, medium-sized and large companies, post-secondary institutions, research organizations and not-for-profits. The Supercluster co-invests in ambitious technology development projects and new solutions to improve the sustainability and competitiveness of natural resources, healthcare and industrial sectors and energize the economy. The seven projects recently announced total some $40 million of investment over three years.

"We are thrilled to celebrate the launch of our first cohort of seven technology leadership projects," says Sue Paish, CEO of the Digital Technology Supercluster. "We are proud to be delivering on the promise of the Innovation Superclusters Initiative so early in our mandate. The investments between the Supercluster and our project partners will propel Canada forward as a digital innovation leader, drive increased economic growth, and create jobs across the province and country."

The first cohort in Canada’s Digital Tech Supercluster focuses on solving some of the most pressing challenges in the natural resources, life sciences, and industrial sectors. These projects can strengthen the early detection and treatment of skin cancers, improve the prediction of manufacturing failures and analyze the economic and environmental impacts of resource projects. Together, these projects will increase Canada's competitiveness, improve healthcare outcomes and accelerate economic growth.

The seven projects approved under the Technology Leadership Programs include:

  • Learning Factory Digital Twin
  • Predictive Analytics for Manufacturing Processes
  • Forest Machinery Connectivity
  • Earth Data Store
  • Tailored Health – Pharmacogenetics
  • Dermatology Point-of-Care Intelligent Network
  • Secure Health & Genomics Data Platform

Each project team brings together a broad consortium of partners that includes industry adopters, technology leaders, start-ups, small and mid-sized businesses, digital innovators and research organizations. Every project is industry-led; each project team includes five to nine partners collaborating to tackle ambitious technology development challenges that require their collective expertise in data analytics, genomics, quantum computing, and virtual, mixed and augmented reality to solve.

DermEnginge and MoleScopell
Photo credit: MetaOptima

Life Sciences Testing

"Receiving a test result can be life-changing," said Ohad Arazi, Chief Strategy Officer, TELUS Health, one of the partners working in the cohort. "This revolutionary new Pharmacogenetics Supercluster project will enable advanced digital technology to seamlessly integrate testing into the primary care EMR and pharmacy ecosystems improving the flow of information from doctor to patient for better health outcomes."

Digital Twins

"Canadian business face new challenges, but also new opportunities presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. By integrating technologies including AI, simulation, IIoT, big data fusion, and visualization, we can invent new ways of digitally twinning the manufacturing process,” says Charles Lavigne, CEO and Co-founder of LlamaZOO Interactive. “These digital twins will then be used to derive new meaningful insights, enhance the learning process and accelerate not only business outcomes but also educational outcomes for Canadian industries.”

D-Wave Technologies
Photo credit: Larry Goldstein


"Every problem that the Digital Supercluster is tackling requires creativity and technology innovation across multiple disciplines. Specifically, predictive manufacturing promises to increase productivity, decrease failures and anticipate the maintenance that large-scale manufacturers require to stay up and running," said Warren Wall, Executive Vice President, D-Wave. "We are proud to be the technology provider bringing quantum computing to help address many of these difficult problems and look forward to ongoing collaboration to solve these real-world challenges."

Cloud Computing

"It's rewarding to see the first projects launch within Canada's Digital Technology Supercluster initiative," says Edoardo De Martin, General Manager for Microsoft Vancouver. "Among them, the Earth Data Store project (EDS) will create a new ecosystem for Canadian research and commerce, empowering members with an innovative cloud-based, distributed data archive and application platform to create geospatially-derived analytics products that are focused on customer verticals."